This page is updated regularly. It provides useful information on violence against woman and girls (VAWG) support for Lambeth residents and practitioners during the context of coronavirus.
What to do in an emergency
If you are in immediate danger, always call the police on 999. If you can't speak on the phone, use the ‘Silent Solution’ system. Press 55 and the operator will transfer the call to the relevant police force as an emergency.
Government restrictions as a result of coronavirus do not apply to you if you are experiencing abuse at home. You are encouraged to seek support. Find out how to get help.
Survivors of domestic abuse and sexual violence may feel particularly alone and at risk during self-isolation. If you’re in Lambeth, you can get confidential advice and support from the Gaia Centre. They can also support you with options around safe housing and legal advice.
See the following about service delivery during this time, also translated into 11 languages:
For 24/7 advice for yourself or someone else, including how to access a refuge, contact the freephone: 0808 2000 247.
MARAC is operating remotely every two weeks. For information or to make a referral email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Support for survivors
Domestic abuse and sexual violence can affect anyone, regardless of their background or gender identity. There are many different forms including emotional, psychological and controlling behavior.
What to do during this time
- Helplines remain open. For a full range of helplines for people affected by domestic abuse and sexual violence see our helplines page.
- The Government has provided a guide Domestic Abuse: get help during the coronavirus outbreak, also available in 15 other languages.
- Refuge released a series of safety tips for survivors during isolation. Including a tech-abuse chatbot if your technology, such as phones or emails, are being tracked or controlled.
- SafeLives have a range of resources and information, including podcasts by survivors, for survivors.
- Rights of Women give free legal advice to women affected by violence and abuse through their advice lines. Opening hours are subject to change.
- The government have released guidance on how to apply for domestic violence injunctions during the pandemic.
- Support is available to victims and witnesses involved in the Criminal Justice System during coronavirus restrictions. Contact the London Victim and Witness Service (LVWS) 8.00am-8.00pm Monday-Friday and 9.00am-5.00pm on Saturday. Phone: 0808 168 9291. Outside these hours, call Victim Support’s free helpline: 0808 168 9111.
- Surviving Economic Abuse have guidance on economic abuse and the impact of coronavirus on their website.
- For information on income benefits, immigration and housing advice see the Council's Benefits advice page
- MyCommunity Hub helps residents to connect with local services, and can offer help with shopping and food parcels: 0333 360 3700 or email email@example.com .
- Check your local Citizens Advice office website for the most up-to-date coronavirus guidance. To speak to someone, contact your Local Citizen's Advice office.
Supporting children during this time
- If you are worried about a child in Lambeth, contact Lambeth Children's Social Care.
- Ask about the support available from children’s centres.
- Information about keeping children safe during the coronavirus pandemic is available on the Lambeth Safeguarding Children Partnership website.
- Rights of Women have guidance about child contact arrangements
Support to change abusive behaviour
Stresses caused by coronavirus are not an excuse for abuse – abusing a partner, ex-partner or family member is always a choice.
Support for friends, family, colleagues and neighbours
Many of us know someone affected by domestic abuse but it can be hard to know how best to support them.
- If you believe an adult or child is in immediate danger due to domestic abuse, call the police on 999.
- If it's not an emergency, you can tell the charity CrimeStoppers UK what you know 100% anonymously. Phone 0800 555 111 or visit the CrimeStoppers website.
- SafeLives have resources on supporting friends and family members experiencing domestic abuse during COVID-19 which include specific resources created by Galop on supporting LGB and/or T+ survivors. They also have a handy guide and a podcast on the subject.
- For more advice on supporting a loved one who is experiencing domestic abuse see Refuge's 1 in 4 Women guidance.
Support for practitioners
- To support staff Lambeth Council have created guidance for managers: Supporting staff who may be experiencing Domestic Abuse during Coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions
- Solace Women’s Aid have created free webinars for practitioners supporting survivors during coronavirus restrictions.
- SafeLives have released guidance and a podcast on working with perpetrators of domestic abuse during coronavirus restrictions.
- IRIS have created guidance for GPs on speaking safely by phone with survivors during isolation, where the perpetrator may be able to overhear. This can be used by any practitioner.
- The Domestic Abuse Housing Alliance (DAHA) have produced 'Guidance for Housing Practitioners During Covid-19'
- The Legal Aid Agency have produced a support package for civil, family and criminal legal aid practitioners to ensure access to justice during the pandemic.
- There are a range of Lambeth-specific grants to support services and residents during this time. Use the domestic abuse and violence filter on the London Community Response Fund's website.
- A directory of grants and useful information on income benefits during this time is available on the Turn2Us website.
- The Lambeth VAWG Team has an online programme of free, interactive and webinar-based training on VAWG issues.